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MW Media applauded for being vibrant in fighting illegal wildlife trade
The United Kingdom government Development Director and Charge D’affairs Fiona Ritchie has applauded the Malawi media for being vibrant in raising the profile and tackling illegal wildlife trade.
MALAWI: The United Kingdom government Development Director and Charge D’affairs Fiona Ritchie has applauded the Malawi media for being vibrant in raising the profile and tackling illegal wildlife trade in the country.
Ritchie was speaking on Thursday at the beginning of a three-day AEJ annual general meeting at Cross Roads Hotel in Lilongwe.
She said sustainable and high quality media campaign was a critical part of the broader effort in the conviction of the kingpin of one of southern Africa’s most prolific wildlife trafficking syndicate who was sentenced to 14 years imprisonment for dealing in rhino horn and money laundering.
“Environmental journalism will increasingly become more relevant as climate change related issues begin to affect more and more people. Direct action related to climate change adaptation and mitigation is urgently required and environmental journalism will be at the forefront of this as we need independent unbiased reporting on the effects of environmental change on society,” Ritchie said.
Ritchie reaffirmed UK’s support towards the promotion of media freedom, and the freedom of expression more broadly saying it is an essential quality of any function democracy as people are free to write, debate and make informed decisions on different issues.
In his opening remarks Deputy Director in the Environmental Affairs Department Ben Yassin said Journalism is key in matters of environmental management especially at a time when the country is planning to move into a middle income status.
“For the country to make strides in environmental management and conservation, we need mindset change, and journalists are a key player in advocating for this change in mindset." Ben Yassin, Department of Environmental Affairs.
Speaking on behalf of Association for Environmental Journalists in Malawi, Board Member Diana Mataya said it is the role of the media to ensure that people understand the need to adopt different adaptation measures against the environmental challenges that are being faced.